Donna Young

Donna Young
Assistant Professor
Building HL 357

Donna Young began her journey in anthropology as a cook for transient railroaders on the CPR, which led to her MA thesis, “The Right Way, the Wrong Way, and the Railway.” (UNB) She has maintained an interest in the anthropology of work and the politics of gender and class. Her doctoral work focused on the cultural constructions of memory as articulated by impoverished women in Atlantic Canada (UT). She has also co-edited a book on academic practices, in which anthropologists were asked to turn their ethnographic gaze upon the institutions that had shaped them as scholars. Currently she is working in East and West Jerusalem where she is examining the ethical and religious practices of The Sisters of Sion and the Roman Catholic pilgrims who are their guests while in the Holy Land.


  • Canadian Association of Social and Cultural Anthropologists, member
  • American Anthropology Association, member
  • American Ethnological Society, member

Teaching Interests

  • Conceptualizing Religion
  • Ritual and Religious Action
  • Political Anthropology

Research Interests

  • Anthropology of Academic Practices
  • The Ethnography of Memory
  • The Anthropology of Religion & Pilgrimage

Awards and Grants

  • 2007 Research funding from Michael Lambek’s CRC "Anthropology of Ethical Life."
  • 2006 Departmental Nominee for Council of Graduate Schools/UMI Distinguished Dissertation Award.
  • 2005-2006 SSHRC SIG Grant "Lives of Women Religious".


  • 2008 "Clothing of Piety, Clothing of Poverty: Object Lessons in a Convent School" Ethnos Vol. 73:3 377-398.
  • 2005 Donna J. Young and Anne Meneley (eds.) Auto-ethnographies: The Anthropology of Academic Practices. Peterborough, Ontario: Broadview Press.
  • 2005 "Writing Against the Native Point of View." In Auto-ethnographies: The Anthropology of Academic Practices. Peterborough, Ontario: Broadview Press. 203-215.